The mission of the Science Directorate is to communicate, facilitate, promote and represent psychological science and scientists. These goals are achieved through programs that promote psychological science in academic and scientific arenas, address ongoing issues and opportunities, communicate activities, issues and opportunities to members and to the public, and advocate on behalf of scientific psychology.
The science of psychology faces many challenges. We must work within increasingly complex regulatory systems, and develop skills and mechanisms for trans-disciplinary, problem-based approaches. We must also balance increasing specialization while maintaining the unity of the discipline and building a pipeline to assure a strong next generation of psychological scientists.
APA is uniquely positioned to champion and broadcast the opportunities and to provide tools for the discipline to tackle the challenges. The professional staff of the Science Directorate works with several member-based governance groups to represent the interests of psychological science.
The Practice Directorate promotes the practice of psychology and the accessibility and availability of psychological services through legislative and judicial advocacy, public education and marketplace initiatives. The APA Practice Organization is housed administratively in the Practice Directorate. Directorate staff supports the professional needs of psychologists in all practice settings and develops educational materials about the value of psychological services for the public, policymakers and psychologists.
We serve a large and diverse practice community that includes independent practitioners and institutional practitioners in large interdisciplinary health care settings, university counseling centers, community mental health centers, state psychiatric hospitals, state and federal prisons, the military services, U.S. Public Health Service, community health and rural health clinics, the Indian Health Service, Department of Veterans Affairs and our schools.
Public Interest Directorate
The Public Interest Directorate fulfills APA's commitment to apply the science and practice of psychology to the fundamental problems of human welfare and the promotion of equitable and just treatment of all segments of society through education, training, and public policy.
The activities of the Public Interest Directorate are overseen by the Board for the Advancement of Psychology in the Public Interest (BAPPI), whose mission is to encourage the generation and application of psychological knowledge on issues important to human well being.
The major objectives of the Public Interest Directorate are to promote aspects of psychology that involve solutions to the fundamental problems of human justice and equitable and fair treatment of all segments of society, encourage the utilization and dissemination of psychological knowledge to advance equal opportunity and to foster empowerment of those who do not share equitably in society's resources and to increase scientific understanding and training in regard to those aspects that pertain to, but are not limited to, culture, class, race/ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, age, and discrimination; and to support improving educational training opportunities for all persons.
The Education Directorate, established in January 1990, advances the science and practice of psychology for the benefit of the public through educational institutions, programs and initiatives. The directorate seeks to advance education and training in psychology and the application of psychology to education and training by enhancing the quality of teaching and learning outcomes at
all levels of education and training, meeting the demands of the changing demographics in a multicultural society through education and training, and increasing the level and availability of financial and public policy support for education and training.